Background: Elderly relatives needed money while simultaneously aging out of using their 2002 F-350, which has less than 50k original miles, and their 1990 Squire by Lance camper on the bed of the truck.
One of us (me) did an 11-week run in a massive motor home/camper more than 25 years ago (work related, I just drove and slept in a bunk over the cab -- others handled the hookups, the tank stuff, etc. I backed us in where we needed to be, and drove, period), the other never camped a day in her life. I spell this out as I am because, humbly speaking, please believe me, we are newbies to this exciting truck camper business to the 10th power.
Though I don't use it anymore, I have CDL-A, my wife does not. To that end, here are a couple of questions that if you have the time and are able to share insights on, we'd be incredibly thankful. If you are reading this, and don't have the time or information -- we still hope you are off to a good day / evening. :-)
1. Is there a specific pre-trip and post-trip checklist that is different than general items: windshield, lights, etc. For example, should the tie downs have play or be as tight as possible? Tire pressure differentials? What about vents and windows in the camper -- assuming all need to be shut solid before travel?
2. To the eye (and tape measure), the camper is over the driver's side by about a foot. Being the truck is so heavy, I don't expect this would do anything to the vehicle's suspension, but is this safe and nothing to worry about, or should I figure out how to off-load and re-center / align it on the Ford's bed?
2a. I never off / on loaded a camper to a truck, there is no 5th wheel or hookups in a traditional trailer. I know there are plugs in the bed that need to come undone, but I never lowered a camper's landing gear to pull out or line up ... is this easier than I think it is or are there specific things I ought to be mindful of.
My primary concerns are safety for me and my bride. My margin of risk in or on any vehicle is fairly close to nil.
Any thoughts or insights would be appreciated, and thank you so much for reading this through.